If the common advice is that epigrams are more effective than rational arguments, Visconti spent his entire career disobeying this message in favor of ostentatious displays of grandeur. To paraphrase Andrew Marvell, ‘like golden lamps in a green night’ Visconti’s films drip sensuality and make their point with bold and original statements. THE DAMNED, a drama centered on a wealthy industrialist family and the history of their business dealings with the Nazi Party, offers perhaps the best example of Visconti’s idiosyncratic way of adapting history for the cinema and is worth seeing alone for Helmut Berger’s demented portrayal of Martin von Essenbeck – one of the greatest performances in film history. (Davis Rivera)
ABOUT THIS SERIES
Born into a prominent family of Milanese aristocrats, Luchino Visconti had a rare perspective on social class and familial tradition that informs his work. His films, small at first, grew to operatic proportions as his career went on, with a thematic grandeur to equal their visual opulence. We are honored to present several new restorations of his films as part of this touring series.